Arguably one of the unsung achievers of yesterday’s radio results was MMM in Melbourne, ably headed by its all-conquering breakfast show and host, the indefatigable Eddie McGuire.
The Hot Breakfast – which McGuire co-hosts with Mick Molloy and Luke Darcy – was up 0.4 per cent to a commanding 9.6 per cent and only bettered by 3AW and the ABC for the morning slot.
McGuire’s dominance on radio is coupled with his ratings winning Millionaire Hot Seat on Channel Nine at 5.30 on weekdays. On top of radio and TV he also commentates on AFL and hosts Foxtel’s Fox Footy. Such is his media presence, Channel Nine insiders have allegedly nicknamed him “Eddie Everywhere” while he reportedly commands one of the the biggest salaries in Australian media – some $5 million-plus a year.
Someone who knows McGuire well – Austereo’s content director Guy Dobson – said McGuire is simply the “boy made good” and admits his audience’s adoration in Melbourne is the reason behind his MMM success.
“He’s a great, ridable broadcaster,” Dobson told B&T. “He’s the boy made good from Broadmeadows. He invariably gets scoops during the football season in Melbourne and that’s why listeners tune-in.
“Eddie’s just one of those rare breeds of talents and we (Austereo) are very lucky to have him,” Dobson admitted.
Loved in his native Melbourne, it would appear McGuire’s popularity is now well and truly national. And the competitors know it with reports again this week that rival Seven had launched yet another unsuccessful bid to lure McGuire to the Stokes-owned network.
Seven is rating badly in Melbourne in the all-important late-afternoon/6pm news slot and Kerry Stokes believed McGuire was just the tonic to solve the dramas; with reports he’d been offered his very own game show to jump ship.
Seven also believed McGuire’s extensive AFL connections (he remains president of the Collingwood Football Club) – that regularly score him exclusives on his MMM radio program – could be a boon for its underperforming 6pm news slot in AFL-mad Melbourne.
It’s unclear what Seven offered McGuire to switch; however, The Australian has reported that he remains on a handshake deal with Nine, something he has had with the station since his tumultous rein as its CEO for 18 months which began back in February 2006.
And even Guy Dobson agrees that not everybody is a dyed in the wool McGuire fan.
“If you look at Melbourne, Eddie McGuire is the number one breakfast show by a country mile. There’s daylight between Eddie and the rest of the shows.
“And you know what? Those who love him listen (to him) and those who hate him listen too. He’s just one of those polarizing characters and he’s endearingly Melbourne,” Dobson said.